Barcelona completed a shock move for former full-back Dani Alves on Friday with the Brazil international set for play for the Catalan giants until the remainder of the 2021-22 season.
“FC Barcelona and Dani Alves have reached an agreement in principle for the player to join the football first team for the remainder of the current season,” read a club statement. The Brazilian will be joining training from next week but will not be able to play until January.”
Alves has celebrated his transfer in typically Alves-style with a post on social media. The charismatic Brazilian showed how he’s working out in the gym but couldn’t resist throwing in a few dance moves as well, as shown by journalist Albert Roge.
The full-back also posted a typically upbeat message to supporters on Instagram.
“Almost 5 years fighting like crazy to get to that moment. I didn’t know it would last that long, I didn’t know it would be so difficult, but I knew within my heart and within my soul that this day would come,” he said. “I return home from where I never leave and as I said before I left; I AM ONE OF YOU, I DON’T KNOW HOW LONG THAT DREAM WILL LAST, BUT MAY IT BE ETERNAL WHILE IT LASTS !! See you soon where it fascinates me the most, with the same enthusiasm as the first time and with the same desire to help rebuild THE BEST CLUB IN THE WORLD !! I’m going to back to my house fckkkk!!!!!”
The move comes as a surprise even though Alves had publicly said he wanted to return to Barcelona. The Catalans had reportedly ruled out a move until new coach Xavi Hernandez decided to give the transfer the green light.
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What Can Barcelona Expect From Dani Alves?
Alves needs little introduction to supporters who enjoyed watching the Brazilian star for the club from 2008 to 2016 as part of one of Barcelona’s greatest ever sides. The full-back picked up a host of trophies in almost 400 appearances.
Things will be a little different this time around as Alves turned 38 in May and is in the twilight of his career. However, he remains a colorful character and his fitness and attitude should not be questioned, according to La Liga expert Sid Lowe.
Alves has likely been brought to Barcelona as much for what he can contribute off the pitch as well as on it. The Brazil international knows exactly what it takes to play at the very top of European football and can offer valuable insight to a young Barcelona squad.
The full-back is also likely to see plenty of playing time with the right-back slot very much up for grabs. Xavi has Sergino Dest, Sergi Roberto, and Oscar Mingueza available but none of the trio have made the spot their own.
Alves’s Leadership Praised
Brazil’s Olympic coach, André Jardine, has offered his thoughts on Alves’s shock return to Barcelona and is in no doubt that the veteran can do a job for the Catalans, as reported by Mundo Deportivo.
“With young people his influence was fantastic, his leadership was formidable. He became a key player, the most important for knowing the ways of success. He knew how to lead in situations of great pressure,” he said. “In training, in the locker room … he takes great care of himself physically, always setting an example. He is very focused on reaching the World Cup in Qatar. He is the type of player who when he has a goal in his head achieves it.”
Alves will have to wait a short time to make his second debut for Barcelona as he can not feature until January 2022. His first game back for the Catalan giants could come away at Real Mallorca in La Liga on January 2.